group class ideas

Angela said: Aug 2, 2008
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
York Springs, PA
33 posts

I am trying to come up with some group class ideas. It seems as if each semester all I work on with the kids is getting ready for recitals or concerts. There is so much more group class offers. I have students from pre-twinklers to book 6 (violin). I think the kids are getting burned out with the same routine. (I know I am). I need some spice. If any one has ideas for group or knows of a book that may have some ideas I’d be interested. I need more games and light hearted stuff and not so serious. I need the kids to have more fun (me too). ;-) Thanks for the suggestions.

Angela Schlessman

Laurel said: Aug 2, 2008
Laurel MacCullochViolin
Langley, BC
120 posts

Here’s one: Each child takes off one shoe, and puts it in the middle of the circle. While playing a Twinkle variation, everyone must take turns putting their own shoe back on (no hands of course! just wiggle their foot into it).

Depending on the size of the group, you can have a “race” to see if everyone can get their shoe on before the end of the Twinkle variation.

With a larger group you could divide them into groups of 5 or 6, and assign a different piece—the book 4-6 kids could play the last piece from book 3, or something. Which group could get their shoes on first?

Pre-Twinklers can of course stick with the rhythm on E string.

I’ve only done this a couple times but it really gets people laughing.

Also—have you done Hide the Rosin? One student leaves the room—another student hides a cake of rosin somewehre in the room, so everyone else knows where it is—first student comes back, and the group plays a song while they look for it—when the seeker is close to the rosin, the group plays ff, and when they are far away from it the group plays pp. Tends to be the most fun for under-10-year-olds.

Also—if each student has a parent in the room, do a listening game: Students and parents are facing each other; students hold their hands palms up, parents hold their hands on top, palms down. Teacher plays a song, and randomly plays a wrong note (sharp, flat, wrong rhythm etc.) When they hear this, the students bring their hands up and slap the parents’ hands—the parents simultaneously try to pull their hands away. This works really well! Takes a bit of practising on the teacher’s part, depending on the song; with the older kids you could put in some quite obscure errors, I’m sure; I’ve only tried this with late Book 1 songs. A good activity to end with.

Hope this helps!
Laurel

Angela said: Aug 2, 2008
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
York Springs, PA
33 posts

Thanks for the ideas. I’ve done hide the rosin but instead of using rosin I do hide the bow. I’ve also done the shoe one. It usually falls apart for me though. Maybe I should give it another try. I haven’t done the parent child one. That’s a good idea. I’ll try it.

I’ve done musical chairs where everyone starts out walking around the chairs and when they get out they have join the “orchestra”. Some kids don’t want to walk around they prefer just being in the orchestra.

I’ve done “Who wants to be a Chocolate-aire”. After Who wants to be a millionaire. For the older ones I’ve made it a little to hard but they still have fun with it.

I’ve also played base ball. Two teams Team 1 is “up to bat” they have to answer questions after 3rd strike there out. Next player. When they get three outs next team is “up to bat”.

I’ve played soccer. Two teams. Team A has the ball they have to play a song and when I clap they have to pass it to another team mate if they make a mistake then they have to pass it to Team B. They try to finish the song where team A left off. Whichever team is able to finish the song they get the point.

I’ve also done where we all stand in a circle one person plays a note or phrase of a song and then has to pass the bow to the next person and they have to pick up where the other one leaves off. Can’t cheat by air playing with left hand. They have to use their ears.

What do you do or what is your objective for group class? If we as teachers can make it more fun than something else then parents and students will want to come more to group then go to another activity.

More ideas on parent interaction will be great!

Angela Schlessman

Grace said: Aug 2, 2008
 Violin
110 posts

ang

I’ve done “Who wants to be a Chocolate-aire”. After Who wants to be a millionaire. For the older ones I’ve made it a little to hard but they still have fun with it.

How does this one work?

My students (and parents!) really enjoy “Composer of the Month” time where I tell them a little about a composer, point out which Suzuki songs are by this composer, show a picture, etc. I use the book “Stories of Composers for Young Musicians” by Catherine Wolff Kendall. It has all of composers of the Suzuki violin books. I feel it’s more efficient to do this in group lesson rather than over and over in private lessons!
http://www.amazon.com/Stories-Composers-Musicians-Catherine-Kendall/dp/0961087803

said: Aug 3, 2008
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Guitar, Flute, Cello, Viola
120 posts

ang, do you incorporate your pre-T to Book 6 kids in one class, or do they come to different classes?

Angela said: Aug 6, 2008
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
York Springs, PA
33 posts

I do not teach book 1-6. I break it down into 3 group classes. Pre-twinkle—and all of book 1; book 2-3; and 4 +.

Chocolate -aire is played like the game. I ask one kid a question on musical stuff. They go until they don’t have any more life lines. 50 / 50, phone a friend (they ask a class mate), and what’s the last one? I just have them ask the the whole class what they think. When they get the answer correct they get a piece of chocolate. Did I explain that correctly enough for you?

Angela Schlessman

Jennifer Visick said: Aug 6, 2008
Jennifer VisickForum Moderator
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Suzuki in the Schools, Violin
998 posts

oooh, that could be fun! How do you choose the students who are in the “hot seat”? … you could get a recording of the music from the show and play it for the kids to start the game off….

Now, what kind of chocolate do you use? Do you have levels? (e.g., an M&M level, a hershey’s kiss level, a symphony bar level…) How many questions do you usually use per “contestant”? what size are your classes? how long do you spend on this game (does it take up a whole class?)

Do you get permission from the parents to hand out chocolate in class beforehand—do you have alternate prizes (to deal with dietary restrictions—e.g. diabetes, nut allergies, etc)?

do the parents participate?

what kinds of questions do you use?

Trish said: Sep 9, 2008
Trish Clair (Horrocks)
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Nanaimo, BC
25 posts

Okay, this one takes a fair amount of prep beforehand, but once it’s done you have a tool you can use for lots of different levels… I use this on those days when the class is feeling really low-energy and it’s always a hit. This came from the book “Games and Motivation for the Suzuki Violin Student” by Diane Wagstaff.

Make a simple “fishing pole” with a magnet on the end, and a bunch of laminated “fish” with metal washers taped to them. The fish can be colour coded in a variety of ways: Book 1, Book 2, etc.; left hand vs. right hand exercises; listening exercises; note recognition flashcards; you get the idea. The students love fishing and have a great time, even when they pick something they might normally roll their eyes at in lesson. Since I started building my fishing game it’s expanded from pre-twinkle to include activities and repertoire up to Book 4.

Sometimes in Book 1 class we do violin olympics: three parents act as judges and two teams compete in categories such as “best candy canes,” “best bow holds,” “smoothest bow circles.” Then the categories get silly …. best choreography, most impressive final bow, best relay performance, etc. Strangely, these olympics always seem to end in a tie….

Here’s another. The children stand in a circle divided in half by a line of tape on the floor: one side of the room is called the “theme” side and the other is the “pony” side. The children walk in a circle while playing Twinkle, and as they cross the line they switch from theme to run pony or vice versa. Guaranteed to get the parents giggling.

Cheers!

Lynn said: Sep 10, 2008
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
173 posts

I like the soccer game!—and i bet my class will like it to :)

I play baseball with classes working on shifting. I give the sign (the shift—start note end note) to the pitcher, who then plays it for the batter. If the pitcher is out of tune, it’s a ball (and, of course, 4 balls is a walk). If the batter plays the shift and it’s out of tune, it’s a strike. If it’s in tune, it’s a run, but if the first base player also plays the shift in tune, he’s tagged out. If the first base player is too effective and no one can get on base, I’ll start throwing balls from the “outfield”—giving a new, more demanding shift for the baseman to catch. I’ve played with as few as one base and as many as 5, depending on the number of students. We still haven’t figured out how to do home runs, though.

Tiffany said: Sep 12, 2008
Tiffany Osborn
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Los Angeles, CA
41 posts

This is my current fave that I saw at an institute this summer- the kids go wild for it. It was inspired by the olympic relay races-

take a clear plastic cup and place it over the tip of your bow, and pass it to the next person. There are only two rules, the bow must be pointed up towards the sky, and you must have a good bow hand in order to receive the cup from your neighbor. It’s great for mixed level groups because everyone can do it.

When I introduce it, we go once around in a circle so everyone gets the idea. The following weeks, we make it a race. you could do a noncompetitive race- everyone on one team, or if you have a big group you could split them in two. After the students have the cup, I play twinkle theme and see what note I am on when the cup reaches the end of the line or circle, say the C# in the second ‘bread’, and see if we can beat it next time.

This last week they were boiling over the top cheering for their teammates, I’m thinking of keeping it as a reward incentive if I need it in the future.

Iona Corber said: Jan 30, 2012
Iona CorberInstitute Director
Suzuki Association Member
Cello
Montréal, QC
1 posts

Great ideas!

Thanks,

Iona

Julie said: Jan 31, 2012
Julie Mae
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Brentwood, CA
4 posts

Thanks so much! Wonderful ideas to rejuvenate my classes and myself!

Lynne said: Jan 31, 2012
 Piano
3 posts

any ideas for group piano classes—ages 4+?

lynnec

Jian Ni Song said: Feb 2, 2012
Jian Ni Song
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Viola
3 posts

I love these ideas!!!! Thank you so much for posting them!!!:)

Lori Bolt said: Feb 3, 2012
Lori Bolt
Suzuki Association Member
Piano
San Clemente, CA
226 posts

Also looking for group piano ideas ~ though several of these should be work w/ some tweaking. Any new thoughts, piano teachers (or parents)?

Lori Bolt

Elizabeth Rothenbusch said: Feb 3, 2012
 Violin, Piano, Viola
Cleveland, OH
6 posts

Try the Musopoly Game designed by a piano teacher. Even my violin students love it for a group class diversion. You can find it at www.SharMusic. com or elsewhere maybe.good luck! Liz

Victoria said: Jul 18, 2012
Victoria McLaughlin
Suzuki Association Member
Cello
Matthews, NC
4 posts

I write this with the hope to exchange ideas for my monthly group cello lessons.
Thanks beforehand for your suggestions!

I have divided my students in pre-T to book 1 and book 2 to 4.

I try to have a theme for every class: so last year for the first group, we did a steady beat class (dance, clap, march, pluck, snap to pieces, then “improvise” to a proposed beat) a posture class (wear shoes in the wrong foot , raise arms for too long, etc all intended to show anti-ergonomic ways, and then translate this into cello posture) a bowhold class (teach your left hand, teach your parent, your worst and your best), a left hand class, a qualities of sound class, a pre-reading, an aproximation to ensemble, a just for fun class(using all the games we introduced in the previous classes), and the last one of nine was used for every one to play their Spring recital piece and get comments from their peers and parents.

In all sessions we played at different times one or more of these games: hide the rosin (huge favorite), pass the plastic cup form bow to bow (as explained by TKO in this discussion), react to the wrong note by clapping (variation on the explained by LaurelM here), correct the teacher’s posture, sing while touching different parts of body per pitch, (i.e.: head, waist, floor for Mary had a Little Lamb), “dictation” in which they put paper note heads on our tape music staff on the floor (we learned D E F G and A), sing “A” out of the blue.

With the second group I did some of the same activities as with the first but brought to their level, plus a lesson in shifting, a Scales class, a triads and relative minor classes. I find them easier to work since we have more repertoire to reffer to.

Anyway, you get the idea. The thing is, I need more ideas for games and fun! Violins can be so much more versatile because they can walk and move more while playing. Thanks again!

Victoria.

Phyllis Calderon said: Jul 25, 2012
Phyllis CalderonViolin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Suzuki in the Schools, Piano
Chicago, IL
22 posts

These are great. It is always so helpful to receive more ideas for group class. So, thanks all!

Here is another listening game for students of any instrument when teaching them note values and hearing rhythm patterns. I start with the Twinkle Variation patterns then move onto a mix of rhythm patterns, as follows:

Have students sit and listen to an assigned rhythm pattern in a piece that you play. It can be any piece that has the assigned pattern you want them to listen for. For this example, let’s say Tiri-tiri ti-ti Explain to the students that they are to stand when they hear the assigned rhythm pattern (and of course sit when they don’t hear it). My students love this and I do it for my Pre-twinklers through Book 1 students. I find that it increases their appreciation in listening to music.

Phyllis Calderon
Director, String Instructor
A Touch of Classical Plus, Inc.—Calderon Music Studio
www.atouchofclassicalplus.musicteachershelper.com

Barb said: Jul 25, 2012
Barb Ennis
Suzuki Association Member
Cello
678 posts

Thanks to all for sharing!

Cellists, there are some ideas found at Carey-Beth Hockett’s Corkybird Enterprises website. Video demonstrations, actually!
Handel Bouree Ballet, Hand Slap Twinkle, Bazooka Chew, Babylon Ballet… even some of the things she has individual students doing might be used in a group.

Here are some I learned from my teacher trainer, Priscilla Jones (who may have credited someone else.. I’ll edit here if I find it):
Pass the Rosin
Using the LEFT hand, the rosin box is passed from person to person USING THE SAME TWO FINGERS. Each time around the circle, use a different finger opposing the thumb. If someone accidentally uses the right hand or different fingers, anyone who witnesses this is to stand up. The box goes back so the person making a mistake can try again.

This gives practice using curved left hand fingers, and some have to really concentrate to use the left hand. Also observation skills for watching for mistakes. For young beginners you might stick with just the 2nd finger.

Treasure Hunt
At every corner have a question such as: “If D Major has two sharps, go right. If it has three sharps, go left.”

Bill Wharton was on faculty at the same institute and attended our class at times. He shared:
Cellopoly
He made a game board using the outline of a small (1/10?) cello. The boxes start at a shoulder and move around and go up the neck. At the scroll is “You Win!” (everyone who completes it is a winner). They roll the die and move their little cars along the squares which each have an instruction of some kind for something to play or an activity or might say go back x number of spaces or forward etc.

If I can get around to reviewing my notes properly I might find some more!

Barb
Music Teachers Helper—for individual teachers
Studio Helper—for entire music studios or schools

Barb said: Aug 17, 2012
Barb Ennis
Suzuki Association Member
Cello
678 posts

There are some lesson plans for group classes here on “Overcoming Your Fear of the Three Year Old” notes.

Edit: The document is no longer at that location as far as I could see. It was included with the 2012 Mini-Online Conference as notes from Mark Mutter’s presentation.

Barb
Music Teachers Helper—for individual teachers
Studio Helper—for entire music studios or schools

Trish said: Feb 14, 2013
Trish Clair (Horrocks)
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Nanaimo, BC
25 posts

I’m just putting the final touches on this month’s “composer” class, featuring Handel, Vieuxtemps, Boccherini, Kreisler, and Canadian composer Jean Coulthard (all born in February). I have prepared a CD for the students so they can complete some listening homework, but we are also doing some listening activities in the class. In addition, we talk about who these people were and what they contributed to music history.

Whenever I do a composer-of-the-month class, I try to feature composers beyond the Suzuki repertoire and always make sure the children are hearing these works performed by contemporary players such as Joshua Bell alongside older recordings featuring performances Heifetz or Kreisler. There are so many things to talk about at all levels ….. Twinklers can draw pictures or create stories based on what they hear in the music, and older kids can compare the playing styles of different violinists playing the same work. I really try to push the kids who are in book two and beyond to offer specific thoughts on each selection we play, and how it might apply to their own journey on the violin. One student in the last class said he didn’t like Kreisler’s vibrato because it was too fast and a bit “cheesy!” We are all entitled to our opinion, I suppose …. and at least he was listening carefully enough to pick up on such a precise detail!

Anyway, there you go, another idea for the group class teachers out there. Happy Valentines Group Class, everyone.

Sophia said: Feb 15, 2013
Sophia Kim
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Cello, Viola
Vancouver, BC
16 posts

I like the composer class idea as well because it enables the students to know the history of each composer, genre or even perhaps style! I guess you could do this with each artist too, it’s good for young learners, in particular to listen to for example: Sarah Chang, Joshua Bell, Hilary Hahn etc., modern, young prodigy types etc., Not necessarily for comparison, and it doesn’t mean they have to be like them, rather that they can aspire and listen to develop their own individual tone/voice for their instrument! There is so much one can do—use your creativity!

Caitlin said: Feb 15, 2013
Caitlin HunsuckViolin
Merced, CA
41 posts

I love this topic! It’s nice to have all these ideas in one place.

I divide my groups by age. My “Mommy and Me” class is for kids 7 and under. I like to do lots and lots of games with them. I have a pre-twinkler, a couple kids in in Book 1 and then a kid in Book 2. They all get along great, and are at the same “mental level.” We do the “pass the egg shell” using the top of Easter Eggs. They pass it along the line of them. We also do copy games where you have the egg on the bow and you have to follow the motions of the leader. I teach them if the egg falls from bow to pick it up quietly and keep going (just like if you get lost when playing with a group!).

I also painted a violin outline a flannel cloth and then cut out several violin parts with black felt. We go over the violin parts names and place them on the violin. Then I go hide the parts while the close their eyes, and then they go find them and put them on the violin outline. They have to say the names of the parts when they put them on. THEY LOVE THIS GAME! I’m not sure why, but it is their favorite.

I also drew a train on a card. This is my music train. The coal car holds “key signatures.” Then I have a bunch of letters and sharps. They have to tell me what letter goes first (based off the amount of sharps) and then we add our train of letters (each letter is in a box car). They also have to put the sharps on the letters! Then sing the scale. Then I go hide the letters and do the same as above! Both these games teach them there are no winners or loosers— but rather they have to work together… Just like with violin.

So you can add those to the pot of games!

After about 20 minutes of games my older kids come in. I do about 30 minutes of review with them. The little kids leave when they don’t know the songs anymore. While reviewing I do games like run around the group and they have to face me (to teach watching the leader) and also the copy game… where I do things like march, spin in circles etc. and they have to copy… or things with the music: tempo, dynamics etc. They enjoy it!

At the end we are left with older/advancing students. I do some sight reading with them.

These are monthly group lessons.

Amy said: Feb 16, 2013
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
50 posts

My current pre-twinkle class favorite game is the matching game with musical symbols. I made my own set of cards cutting 3×5 index cards in half. They also really enjoy passing a bean bag on the beat while listening to the cd, and forming ‘gorgeous’ bowholds in various places around the studio.

I’ll have to explore more of the composer-class idea. I really enjoy playing spooky music at halloween, Corelli’s Christmas Concerto at Christmas, and programatic music at appropriate times of year. Tying this in with composer birthdays is a great idea!

Carol Gwen said: Feb 21, 2013
Carol Gwen Kiefer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Washington Crossing, PA
75 posts

Not too long ago I did a jeopardy type game, where the answer is given and the class has to come up with the question. I got pretty interesting questions ;)

Pre-Twinks can also pass a bandanna around the circle from tip to tip. The kids sit. Older students pass a ring, which is tricky. The tips need to synchronize or the ring falls off. For more fun have more than one ring circulating at a time.

Pre-Twink finger pick ups. Dump buttons or beads on the floor. Kids use specified fingers to pick up one at a time to place back in the container. I usually use the fourth finger and thumb (violin hand, not piano).

Movement is great if you have space. Dynamics, form, or stop and start (freeze). Age appropriate. Form, walk and change direction in B section. Can begin with Twinkles to get the idea of form (bread cheeses bread). Younger student you play the violin and they move, older students play as they move. For Forte everybody to this side of the room, piano move to this side of the room. Good for echoes, great for cresc. and dim.

I like to teach rounds. My student’s go-to round is Are You Sleeping. Sometimes they ask to play a round. Tonight was Make New Friends (Girl Scout song). For each entrance turn in the opposite direction. Neat to see the kids play the round and move in sequence.

At one time I had kids who loved the elimination game. You play and stop. If the student stops they stand, if not they sit. Winner is who ever is still standing. Prize is they pick the next game, or song, or whatever. Older students can take turns being the leader. Emphasis is on the tip of the leaders bow. Also on internalizing the piece and rhythm.

Games should always have a one point lesson. I explain to beginning parents what the skill is to give them ideas at home. I love it when a parent and student share a game they made up!

Just a few variations on what’s already been written. So many variables are possible once you get thinking along the right track. Kids can help define rules, too. I’ve also noticed that a game that’s popular with one class may not work with another. The group dynamic always plays into the class.

I could use more ideas for advanced classes. Any one?

Sue Hunt said: Feb 22, 2013
Sue Hunt
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Violin
390 posts

With elimination games, have you noticed that the child who needs the most practice, has to sit down first and promptly looses interest?

You can keep the losers engaged with another simple challenge, such as how many bow holds can they make with a parent’s help. They can rotate round the mums, which will give them practice in helping. Doing this will also show the parents that each individual has different strengths and weaknesses. You will of course need a helper to oversee it.

OR… What about getting the winner to sit down instead?

Carol Gwen said: Feb 23, 2013
Carol Gwen Kiefer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Washington Crossing, PA
75 posts

Yes, Sue, some classes don’t do well with the elimination game. I don’t want any child to feel left out.

If it’s a class that likes the challenge it works well. I can make the stopping place very obvious, if needed. Sometimes I put a butterfly finger puppet on the tip of my bow for added visual. Other times everyone is out on the first try because I make it ridiculously difficult! It does depend on how well the group follows the leader. Adjust the game to fit the needs of the individuals. A simple stop and start without “losers” works well, too.

More variations on a classic. what do you think?

Rose Lander said: Feb 23, 2013
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
55 posts

i love to use humor in my teaching. and i do not want children to feel stigmatized by losing. i play “watch like a hawk” game. if child keeps playing when i stop, there will be “dark consequences”. so almost 100 percent of the time , everyone watches like a hawk. if they do not, the consequences are to do something silly while playing the song again, for example ,playing with one eye closed, while smiling, while sticking out his tongue, while kneeling, on one foot. everyone gets the idea, and no one is made to feel like a failure!

Barb said: Feb 26, 2013
Barb Ennis
Suzuki Association Member
Cello
678 posts

I think I shared this website on another thread… but just so that it’s here too…

Susan Paradis Games

There are several free games to print including bingo, matching (memory) and board games, flash cards… with lots of seasonal themes. I laminated some of them to make them last. My kids just love bingo. Sometimes they even play it alone while a sibling’s lesson is happening. Yesterday our cat had a card and the student helped him fill it in! :-) Her focus is piano, but of course a lot is suitable for any instrument.

Barb
Music Teachers Helper—for individual teachers
Studio Helper—for entire music studios or schools

Patrice McLoughlin said: Jul 2, 2014
 Violin
1 posts

Does anyone remember a version of “wrong note/out of tune note” game
where the kids are sitting in a circle and teacher is playing and walking around the circle? I am trying to remember some tricks after a few years away from
group lessons.

Thanks!!

Cortney Combs Baker said: Jul 6, 2014
Cortney Combs Baker
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Cary, NC
13 posts

The “wrong note/out of tune note” game that I remember is this…

…pair students with a partner (another student or parent—if you are working with a class of young kids, ie. pre-twinkle)
…One student holds their hands palms up and the other holds their hands palm down setting them lightly on the other’s hands.
…When a wrong/out of tune note is played by the teacher (while playing a piece through in its entirety) then the student with hands on the bottom brings their hands out and up over their partner’s hands as quickly as they can to slap the top of their partner’s hands.
…Then, as quick as possible, the partners reset their hand position and wait for the next wrong/out of tune note.

We usually do this at least two times and rotate who is on the bottom each time.

The goal is to heighten students’ aural discernment. You as a teacher can discern where your students’ listening level are as you watch who moves for only wrong notes vs. those who hear the slightly out of tune ones. Also, as students hear the slapping around them, they identify sounds they may be missing and work to be with the rest of the group.

This is a great listening tool!

Jessica Moulton said: Nov 24, 2014
 1 posts

I took Suzuki group classes my whole life.

For the younger students involving candy in anyway always kept my interest. Learning a proper bow hold at a young age can be frustrating. But when you change the name of the game and offer candy things are much different.

My favorite game was a hard lifesaver on the end of the bow. Then my teacher helped us move the bow up and down and side to side while maintaining proper bow hold. if we dropped it its okay still use the one you dropped and collect a new one to eat at the end of class. The moved it up then down side to side we walked around the room all while maintaining balance and proper bow hold.

For the older more advanced students keeping them from being bored is essential. When at all possible i advise that you offer classes which gather a cellist, 2 violinists, and a viola and have a string quartet. This teaches patience and the importance of practice before a lesson. If I didn’t know my part, my teacher spent too much time teaching it, which meant less time on the piece as a whole. They eventually did away with this class, but it stuck with me my whole life and I would recommend it to any teacher. You can do suzuki duets and even incorporate more advance pieces from vivaldi etc.

I hope this helps 6 years later.

Mircea said: Aug 21, 2015
Mircea Ionescu
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Crestwood, KY
23 posts

Excellent games, thank you all for sharing! I am seeking new ideas all the time. Have a wonderful week of teaching.

Amanda Marie said: Sep 8, 2015
Amanda Marie TewViolin
Saint Joseph, MI
14 posts

Just went to training with Ann Montzka Smelser this summer and she did one that I thought was fun:

Emotion cards. The student picks 3 cards with different emotions on them. Everyone sees them, but the student silently picks one and then tries to play her piece showing that emotion- everyone has to guess which emotion.

I plan to use this to start developing more musicality in my progressing book 2 students.

I think for a group class you could have half the class, or most the class decide on which emotion, and they all play it, and just a few try to guess. That way more are playing.

Elizabeth Erb Sherk said: Sep 8, 2015
 
Suzuki Association Member
Piano, Recorder, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Guitar
25 posts

lovely idea! Thank you for posting.

Elizabeth Sherk, North York Suzuki School of Music, Ontario

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